Serious Eats: Recipes
Dinner Tonight: Spinach with Golden Potatoes
One thing I've come to love about Indian cooking is the masterly way they cook vegetables. There's something wonderful about the texture and spiciness of vegetable curries that tastes remarkably full and meaty. Even though I was first hooked by takeout standbys like chicken tikka masala, the soul of Indian cooking must be a vegetarian.
Saag, a common dish, is a kind of creamy spinach with mustard leaves that's served at a soupy consistency (saag paneer, with chunks of paneer cheese, is a common variation). Saag aloo is a version with potatoes. This recipe, adapted from The Best-Ever Curry Cookbook, is from Bengal and is slightly different. Mustard seeds are used instead of leaves, and the spinach isn't cooked down nearly as much.
Ginger and garlic, which begin just about every curry I've cooked, are caramelized with mustard seeds and fresh chili, then combined with water as the potatoes braise. During the process they melt into a sauce that's rich and spicy.